Thursday, November 08, 2007

 

Dog bites man: More Incompetence in the DC Government

D.C. Tax Workers Charged In Scam

“Two mid-level D.C. government employees used phony paperwork to collect more than $16 million from illegal tax refunds, avoiding detection for at least three years while issuing more than 40 checks cashed by friends and family members in on the scam, prosecutors said yesterday.”

Apparently authorities weren’t able to break this case until the acting Attorney General specifically authorized the waterboarding of a witness.

Ha! Just kidding…only because I think waterboarding is funny. Anyway, the story doesn’t say so we’ll probably just have to wait to learn how all this is George Bush’s fault.

Side Notes: “Chief Financial Officer Natwar M. Gandhi asked for the resignations at the tax office… None was implicated in the fraud, but officials said they left because of their failure to catch it….

“Still, [Mr. Gandhi] said, "The most sophisticated audits won't be able to find this kind of corruption."

Uhh, yes they would. Actually, the audit need not be that sophisticated. As the story indicates, the refunds issued were extremely large. An ordinary audit procedure would stratify the populations of property tax refunds such that the large dollar refunds would be grouped for testing. Such tests would include tracing back to the original tax payment, examining the real property records for the history of the account (including any changes in assessments) and even sending out confirmations to all the parties listed on the checks.

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